Cape Town - Everton’s
major shareholder Farhad Moshiri has said striker Romelu Lukaku refused
to sign a new contract at Everton after a voodoo message told him to
The Belgium striker was about to sign a new contract during a meeting in March last year when the amazing u-turn occurred.
"We offered him a better deal than Chelsea and his agent came to
Finch Farm to sign the contract," Moshiri told Everton's Annual General
"Robert (Elstone, chief executive) was there, everything was in
place, there were a few reporters outside, then in the meeting Rom
called his mother.
He said he was on a pilgrimage in Africa or somewhere and he had a voodoo and got the message he needs to go to Chelsea."
Iranian businessman Moshiri, who has invested around £150 million of
his money into the club, said the club offered Lukaku around £140 000 a
week to stay.
"The issue with Romelu was not financial. As long as I am major shareholder financial issues are irrelevant.
"I wasted two summers to keep him, first summer with his agent, him and his family we managed to keep him.
"Last summer we offered him a better deal than Chelsea, whatever they offered we matched but he just didn't want to stay.
Lukaku eventually changed his mind after spending time with his
friend Paul Pogba and moved to Old Trafford for an initial £75 million.
"I got close to Rom, I like the boy, he's a good boy, and I used all my charm to keep him and I flatly failed," Moshiri added.
"Ultimately we lost money. To buy Rom now would be £120 million. The
issue was his brain had gone. He was in LA (with Pogba) and he wouldn't
Moshiri said he had suffered a similar fate trying to keep Ross Barkley at the club.
Barkley sealed a switch to Chelsea last week after backing out of a £35 million deal in the summer.
"I didn't spend as much time to keep Ross as I did Rom," added Moshiri.
"We got into the last year (of his contract) and again we didn't want him to go.
"Bill miraculously got an offer for £35 million for a player who was injured and then he changed his mind.
"Sam (Allardyce) spoke to him and he didn't want to stay."